Year: 2022 Source: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. (2022). 52, 2367–2375. SIEC No: 20220332

Despite increasing attention on suicidality in autistic people, we know little about suicidal presentations when autistic individuals present to hospital emergency departments (ED). We conducted an exploratory retrospective chart review of suicidal thoughts and behaviours (STB) of autistic adults who presented to a psychiatric ED. The analysis included 16 charts over a 10-week period. Findings highlight that reported STB were not always the presenting issue. Life transitions and interpersonal conflicts were common antecedents, and active rumination about STB was distressing and fatiguing. Findings imply that ED visits serve as important opportunities for suicidal risk reduction for autistic individuals, through implementation of strategies for identification of STB such as active screening, and the provision of suicide resources tailored to autistic people.